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In Brazil 70% of Women Abuse Is Shelved. At Women’s Request.

A survey in Brazil coordinated by professor Heleieth Saffiotti has found that 70% of cases of violence against women get shelved in São Paulo police stations.

The survey shows that the main reason the cases do not move ahead is because the women themselves halt the inquiries in the hope that the perpetrators (husbands or legal companions) will change their behavior.


The survey was based on police reports in Woman Defense police stations around the country (22 state capitals and various cities in the state of São Paulo).


A attempt was made toobtain a profile of the women who were victims. The majority of them were between the ages of 30 and 40 and had been living with the person who attacked them for 10 years.


A law professor at the Catholic University of São Paulo, Silvia Pimentel, says that in legal terms Brazil has made advances with the constitution of 1988, in gender equality, and the reform of the country’s Civil Code in 2002, which eliminated legislation that automatically registered the man as head of a household.


But Pimentel says further legislation on domestic violence is needed.


Agencia Brasil
Translator: Allen Bennett

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